Becoming a Permanent Resident (PR) in Singapore is a status desired by many foreigners who have plans to stay, live and work in the country for the long-run. In Singapore, any foreigners who hold an Employment Pass, Entre Pass, Personal Employment Pass or S Pass and have been working in the country for at least six months can apply to become a PR. If you’re holding a Student pass in Singapore, you must be in Singapore for at least 2 years to be eligible for PR.
Apart from enjoying Singapore’s many job opportunities, high level of safety and security, melting pot society of different cultures, races, languages and religions, PRs enjoy many other benefits and rights that are exclusive to them, such as the right to enter and leave the country without having to apply for a separate visa for travel. Here are some of the benefits that you will have as a Permanent Resident in Singapore:
Travel freedom and no work pass restrictions
As a Singapore PR, you will no longer have to worry about getting rejected when re-applying for new visas and work passes every 2-3 years or when changing jobs. You can also leave or enter the country freely. With more job opportunities available to PRs in Singapore, you can get to choose the job of your choice without getting your pass tied up with the employer. You will receive a Blue Identity Card that serves as your identity document in Singapore and that allows you to live in, enter and leave the country without any restrictions!
Apply for PR status for your spouse and children
You can apply for PR status on behalf of your spouse and unmarried children (under the age of 21). School-aged children are given priority, just second to Singapore citizens, to enrol in public schools of their parent’s choosing. You can also apply long-stay visas for your parents so they can live with you for longer periods in the country.
Enjoy financial benefits from the Central Provident Fund (CPF) scheme
Singapore PRs are included in the Central Provident Fund (CPF) scheme, under which both you and your employer contribute a monthly amount to your CPF, which is a pension fund. With your CPF, you can withdraw money for various necessities like housing, insurance, investment, education, hospitalisation, insurance and retirement, and see your assets grow at a higher appreciation rate.
Get housing loans
When applying for housing loans, PRs have greater priority of having their loans approved. You will also be able to purchase resale or second-hand Housing Development Board (HDB) flats that only PRs and citizens are allowed to buy. This greatly increases your access to housing in the country!
Be qualified to apply for Singapore citizenship
After you have been a PR for a certain number of years, you will be able to apply to become a Singapore citizen – to hold the same rights and privileges as any citizens who were born in Singapore! Better than a Singapore PR, you will have top priority to benefits like housing, education and healthcare subsidies and have the freedom to travel with one of the most powerful passports in the world, visa-free.
While being a PR comes with many benefits, it also comes with certain responsibilities. Sons of PRs will have to register for National Service in the country when they reach the age of 16.5 and will have to carry out their service at the age of 18. After completing two years of full-time National Service, they will have to continue to serve Operationally Ready National Service (ORNS), also known as reservist, for up to 40 days every year until the age of 50 for officers and age 40 for other ranks.
Overall, being a Singapore Permanent Resident (PR) comes with many benefits and privileges that enable you to live and work in Singapore and travel in and out of the country, just second to Singapore citizens. Many foreigners who plan to stay in Singapore permanently will desire to become a PR and then later apply for Singapore citizenship so that they can enjoy the full rights of living in the Lion City. Before you apply, make the effort to understand the benefits and liabilities of being a Singapore PR so that you can make a well-informed decision for you and your family!
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